20 months ago we started the process to obtain dual citizenship, because we knew that in February 2012 our "permanent" visa was going to run out. For various reasons we were not going to be able to renew the "permanent" visa, which only is good for 5 years, so we went the dual citizenship route. Dual citizenship is also the most secure way to be able to stay in Brazil and continue to join in God's work here.
Any type of government process in Brazil is long and stressful, and typically ends up costing some good money because of all of the documents and fees you have to get. We had to provide 22 different kinds of documents for the dual citizenship, and most of them cost money and take alot of time to get.
Because the government is so slow here, they did not finish the dual citizenship on time, so today we had to go to the Federal Police in Santos to ask for a renewal of the permanent visa. We were told we had to bring 5 documents with us, which we did. After they reviewed these documents, we were told that we needed to go to our bank and pay a fee for the process, and then return with proof of payment. Fortunately our bank had a branch nearby and we did this fairly quickly. Before we returned to the Federal Police we got a call saying that we needed to go to a special document place and get an authenticated copy of a document, so we went and got that too before we returned. When we returned we were told that we needed to go back to the special document place and get another authenticated copy of something else, so we went and did that and returned. Then we were told that we needed to back to the bank and pay another fee and then return with the proof of payment.
So after 3 hours of running around and jumping through their hoops we finally were told that our visa was extended for 9 more years, praise God. Even though we were not able to get the renewal through normal channels, because the government was too slow in processing the dual citizenship we were able to get the 9 year visa extension. God is good !